TEAM OF ITALY AND BELGIUM SHARES THE TOP OF THE MEDAL TALLY IN HERSTAL
The record number is broken at the 2015 Kata European Judo Championships in Herstal which counts 125 couples. This weekend the city of Herstal in Belgium hosts the Kata European Championships.
First day of the competition finished the best for the team of Italia and host nation Belgium, for both nations their pairs won three gold medals. Third place was taken by team of Romania with two gold medals in total.
Find all results here:
During the championships, we spoke with the President of the European Judo Union, Mr. Sergey Soloveychik.
1. What are the benefits of KATA in general?
What is the benefit of judo? I think the same question goes with Kata. Kata was implemented by our founder of judo, Jigoro Kano and we should not forget this. We should practise kata, take exams, also to be a part of the competitions and to develop this part of judo in favour of development of our sport.
2. This is the tenth Kata European Judo Championships, how important is it for EJU to have an event such as this?
It's important that our federations don't take part only at the regular judo competitions. It means that federations should take part in this special field of judo like kata and organise events such as this one which is very traditional and it's good for any age generation. By this opportunity I would like to thank the Belgium Judo Federation for organizing the Kata European Judo Championships on such high level, here in Herstal we have lot of participants who will have chance to improve their skills, to make friendship between them and I'm very happy because of that.
3. You are also a very active judoka, you have also participated at many kata seminars, can we expect to see you at some of these events?
Sure! When I finish with my Presidency you will see me on tatami, because I like to do judo and like to be a part of the judo family. Maybe I will not compete but I will take some exams.
4. In Japan it is normal that world-class judoka participate at the KATA events, if you could choose, whom of our current judo stars would you like to see at this event?
I don't think it's like that but I'm not sure that they practise during their fighting careers - they practise kata after, like Yamashita who studied kata and was passing exams same as Kosei Inoue. Firstly, I think this is good for judo, good for promotion of judo, secondly, they need it for themselves, because if you do judo without kata I think it is not a right way. So I believe that our champions will also go this way, not only for them but also for younger generations to explain them the values of judo, all the different varieties of judo such as shiai, randori, kata, etc.
5. The European Judo Union has a great collaboration with the Kodokan, can we say that we are the most active continental union under the IJF in all areas?
I don't think we should make competition between continental unions. What is the most important for us, EJU, is what all we do to be from our spirit, our soul, to do everything that is possible to do, but that is probably not enough as there is always a place for improvement.